Several unfortunate incidents in NASCAR recently have brought the importance of impact-absorbing barriers to light, however, it looks like the Automobile Club l’Ouest didn’t get the memo. Roald Goethe’s number 96 Aston Martin hit an unprotected concrete wall hard this morning.
In an attempt to stay out of the way of the number 19 Porsche 919, Goethe ran wide and spun near the Ferris Wheel, hitting a concrete barrier with the front of his car.
[Fair warning: driver’s status has not been confirmed and this may have resulted in injury. It’s a hard smack, regardless.]
Aston Martin Racing confirmed that Goethe was conscious and talking on the radio after the hit, however, he was taken to the on-site medical center for further evaluation. Daily Sportscar’s live Twitter feed reported that Goethe complained of a sore back.
All things considered, this was a hit that was harder than it should have been. Walls that are likely to be hit should be covered in an impact-absorbing material like a SAFER barrier, although even a cheap and simple tire wall would have been an improvement here. Otherwise, hits like this are more dangerous than they really should be. We know these things help, and there’s not much of an excuse for putting off upgrades related to safety at major circuits like this.
This story will be updated as soon as updates on Goethe’s condition are released.
Update: Goethe will be having some precautionary x-rays just in case:
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